The Complexities of Criminal Defense for Celebrities
Defending celebrities legally is a delicate matter requiring exercise in discretion and privacy. It also requires a special set of skills, knowledge, and finesse to manage the complexities of criminal defense for celebrities. Lawyers who handle celebrity cases must deal with the everyday legal matters they would for any client and must attend to media harassment and drama and rumors in the press.
The demands of a celebrity criminal defense are arguably more strenuous than the needs of non-celebrity clients. The attorneys at De Castroverde Criminal & Immigration Lawyers understand the needs of celebrity clientele and are prepared to give those cases the delicate and full attention they deserve.
Handling Media Speculation
In celebrity cases, the biggest risk of exposure for clients is the news media. Rumors can easily spread and convolute not only the trial but also public opinion. The added stress of paparazzi and public interviews can take a toll on clients. An attorney can help mitigate these situations and take as much stress out of the ordeal as possible.
Laws Regarding Paparazzi and the Press
The First Amendment protects U.S. citizens and paparazzi and other news media outlets under their right to freedom of speech and freedom of expression. However, intrusive behaviors that violate one’s privacy, intrude or defame a person, or otherwise violate their right to privacy are not protected under the law.
In California, for example, it is illegal to trespass on private property, take photos or video while on private property, or follow celebrities in cars. However, the First Amendment protects editorial photos and other forms of celebrity reporting. As such, slander and proliferation of false information may circulate. A celebrity’s criminal defense lawyer needs to handle media speculation and inquiries while minding their client’s privacy at the same time.
Because the lines of what is considered a violation of privacy and what is a violation of free speech can sometimes be unclear in these cases, a lawyer can help define the lines.
Does the Law Show Leniency Toward Celebrities?
Most people assume celebrities who break the law can easily get away with it when, in fact, it is the opposite. Celebrities are constantly in the public eye and are held to a higher standard when it comes to their behavior and ethics.
The misconception also stems from the fact that many celebrities are charged with minor offenses that are often reduced to misdemeanors with no jail time, even with non-famous people. Despite this, pop stars and athletes will often face harsher sentences, pay higher fees, and serve longer community service requirements than the general population.
Why Do Celebrities Get Stricter Sentences?
Because celebrities are so often in the public eye, when a celebrity is arrested, it puts a spotlight on law enforcement agencies. This puts pressure on them to not appear “soft.” As news reports on their story, more people watch to see how the case is resolved. This can mean district attorneys want to make an example of celebrities, resolving in harsher punishments.
Celebrity Cases Put Pressure on the Police
Police officers handling celebrity cases know that their every move will be analyzed and scrutinized by media and public eyes. As such, their departments have defense lawyers to help them navigate their legal moves.
The pressure to perform their jobs correctly, as well as justify their arrest of a celebrity, creates a legal clash among the police, the court, lawyers, and their clients. This is why celebrity representation is even more challenging to manage.
Celebrity Lawyers vs. Lawyers Who Represent Celebrities
Contrary to the name, celebrity lawyers are not attorneys that solely represent celebrities. The legal profession involves several practice areas, and celebrity lawyers can operate in many of those areas. However, a celebrity lawyer is an attorney that is famous for their work as a lawyer.
For example, you may have heard of Martin Garbus, who has worked with comedian Lenny Bruce, civil rights activist Cesar Chavez, and children’s author J.K. Rowling. While you may recognize these names and know they are celebrities themselves, Garbus has also represented many other people who are not as widely known. His fame was achieved through celebrity representation, but his skills reached a broad range of areas, such as copyright, criminal defense, free speech, internet law, and class action litigation.
Lawyers do not need to specialize in any “celebrity-specific” law school to provide representation. An attorney with the right background can defend a celebrity accused of a crime.
Key Characteristics of a Successful Criminal Defense Lawyer
Certain personal characteristics are also vital in representing celebrity criminal defense cases. Sorting out their priorities and taking the time to use the right skills to get the job done is important in high-stress legal cases. Having the self-awareness to push past obstacles and reach a successful outcome makes an attorney capable of representing a celebrity.
Another important trait to embody is commitment. Showing your client that you care, as well as dedication to the case and the law, leads to more success. Face-to-face meetings, being available often, and having a clear understanding of a law firm’s operations show a tireless commitment.
Representing Celebrities in High-Profile Cases
Having a background in criminal law is important in celebrity legal cases. They can minimize damage to a client’s case and advise them at critical points in their case. While this may seem like an obvious point, every move a celebrity client makes is important. Learning to work with someone who is used to speaking and acting in public takes patience and foresight to estimate future complications.
Steps to Success
In criminal defense for celebrities, six steps can lead to a successful outcome:
- The client may be the biggest obstacle in your case. Help them understand the impact their words and actions can have.
- It takes a team to win. Welcome help when you can.
- Pick a theme for the defense, and frame that theme consistently (e.g., “My client is a family man.”)
- Control the media and learn how to manage interviews.
- Equalize your client and help the public see them as just another citizen.
- Navigate what you perceive to be true and what is reality. Your client will have two sides to their life, public and private, and it is your job to defend both of those images.
Discreet Defense Attorneys in Las Vegas
If you or someone you know is facing legal troubles in the Las Vegas area, call De Castroverde Criminal & Immigration Lawyers for help. There’s no time to waste in investigating your case, especially in celebrity cases. It’s critical to work fast to gain a favorable defense. Don’t hesitate to contact one of our offices in the Las Vegas area to get the legal help you need.
What Makes Us the Best Choice for Celebrity Criminal Defense?
Representing celebrity clients means not only fighting for a good outcome in court but also protecting their ability to perform in the public eye. Our law firm approaches legal cases with a dependable work ethic.
De Castroverde Criminal & Immigration Lawyers have roots in dedicated law practice in our family’s history. We have more than 30 years of experience practicing criminal defense, personal injury, immigration, and more.
We take the time to meet with our clients face to face and focus our resources on delivering justice, even in difficult situations with obstacles from the media. Contact us today and talk with a team member for more information.